Restaurant Academy Bread or
2 cups water
3 tsp yeast
3-1/2 cups plus 2-1/2 tsp white flour
2 1/2 tsp sea salt
Dissolve yeast in water with a whisk, pour over the flour. Add salt. Knead at the highest possible in a machine until the dough loosens from the bowl, which can take 15-20 minutes.
I used the Kitchenaid mixer and a dough hook, I kneaded at the fastest speed I dared. It took about 20 minutes and really sounded like the mixer might take off from the counter a do a few laps around the kitchen.
Transfer dough to a lightly oiled plastic container, cover and let rest for a hour. gently place the dough on floured surface. Divide in half and very gently shape two loaves on a baking tray. Let them rise at room temperature for 1 hour.
I used a baking stone. The point of being gentle is you really want to avoid breaking any bubbles in the dough. I probably needed to knead it a little longer (or faster). The dough was a little sticky so I lost some gas bubbles.
Preheat oven to 480 degrees. Put the loaves into the oven and squirt some water in with a squirt bottle.
I put in about 1 tbs of water. The water steams up and simulates the humidity in a wood fired brick oven.
Bake for 10 minutes then turn the heat to 400 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes. Let the loaves cool on a rack.
This bread was really, really good. It had a delicious crispy crust and a sturdy, chewy crumb. I enjoy baking these different breads, or changing my old recipes to see what I can make. It's like a cool, edible chemistry lab.